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  • Writer's pictureJen Van de Kieft

Kitten Fostering: A Life Saving Resource

Oscar, my foster kitten.

This is Oscar, my foster kitten. He was trapped at 4 months old, past the prime socialization period. Despite that, he’s made amazing progress. Luckily he’s food motivated and loves to play making working with him a pleasure. In a short time, he’s become very affectionate, less fearful, and ready for adoption.

Kittens under 8 weeks old require attention and resources that shelters often cannot provide. Kittens are in need of temporary homes where they can be offered a safe place, food, and human handling for socialization, which will make them great candidates for adoption. Neonatal kittens (under 4 weeks old) are at the highest risk of euthanasia in shelters because they require frequent feedings and warm temperatures. It doesn’t take much to foster. I use my bathroom for kittens, which is all the space they need. Socializing kittens is a key part of fostering. From age 2 weeks and up, kittens should be handled frequently so they learn not to be afraid of people and that being pet is enjoyable. Fostering is a wonderful and rewarding experience. You can sign up to foster with your local rescue group. Learn more about kitten care at Alley Cat Allies or

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